Led by strong revenue receipts particularly from excise duty, the Modi government has managed to keep its fiscal deficit in check without compressing expenditure.
The Centre has been focused on ramping up public spending to spur growth.
Data released by the Controller General of Accounts on Thursday revealed that the Centre’s fiscal deficit was Rs.4,83,523 crore between April and November 2015 or 87 per cent of the Budget estimate. Though this is higher than the 74 per cent in the previous month, it is much lower than the corresponding period a year ago when its fiscal deficit was 99 per cent of the Budget estimate.
Similarly, the revenue deficit too was under check at Rs.3,45,328 in the first eight months of the fiscal, amounting to 87.5 per cent of the Budget estimate. It had exceeded the target by November end 2014 at 108.6 per cent of the Budget estimate.
Revenue receipts remained buoyant at Rs.6,38,056 crore or 55.9 per cent of the full year target between April and November 2015 as against 45.5 per cent in the year ago. Tax revenues shot up to Rs.4,64,864 crore by November end or more than half of the full year target as against 42.3 per cent a year ago. Excise duty collections were the highest in November at Rs.22,961 crore though the mop-up in corporate and income taxes was more subdued in the month under review.
Total receipts stood at Rs.6,58,784 crore or 53.9 per cent of the Budget estimate between April and November this fiscal as against 43.4 per cent of the full year target a year ago.
Finance Minister Arun Jaitley had on Wednesday described the low oil prices as “silver lining” this year which helped the Centre keep its fuel subsidy under control and increased revenue collections.
Meanwhile, the Centre’s total expenditure was Rs.11,42,307 crore or 64.3 per cent of the Budget estimate in the first eight months of this fiscal, partially higher than 59.8 per cent of the full year funds spent last fiscal.
Of this, non-Plan expenditure was Rs.8,44,289 crore while Plan expenditure was Rs.2,98,018 crore.
Meanwhile, data released by the Finance Ministry revealed that India’s external debt stock was $483.2 billion by September end, rising by 1.7 per cent from the level at end-March 2015.